Sunday, December 25, 2011

How Many Blue Jays?

My property was named Blue Jay Barrens because Blue Jays and Barrens were two things that I could count on seeing any day of the year.  Blue Jays are still plentiful and are especially noticeable when they come to the house for their morning feeding.  I’ve tried on numerous occasions, but I’ve never been able to get an accurate count of Blue Jays in the yard.

For one thing, they never stay still.  There are always birds moving to and from the feeding area.

When numbers do build up on the ground, something spooks them into flying off in all directions.

They also spread out over a fairly large area.  They’re at both feeding stations, scattered across the lawn, in nearby trees and sitting in trees up to 150 yards away.  Constant movement between these various areas makes it impossible to have any confidence in my count.

Even when they’re on the ground, they’re not always easily seen.  You never know how many are hidden behind one of the trees.

I guess that I’ll just have to stick with my estimate that there are a bunch of Blue Jays living at Blue Jay Barrens and not get too concerned with the actual number.  Just seeing them surround the house is a pretty good Christmas present.


  1. HI Steve...Beutiful Christmas morning there... I love your colorful birds today ...Have a great day no matter what you do!!
    Merry Christmas

  2. Hi Grace. Hope you had a wonderful Christmas. It was sunny and mild here. There was no shortage of Blue Jays to share the day with us.

  3. Wow that is just crazy thanks for sharing. Merry Christmas

  4. I've always liked bluejays, and never could understand why even some bird enthusiast neighbor ladies of my childhood disparaged them. I was truly saddened when several years ago the West Nile virus swept through here and silenced the bluejay population completely (and the crows and great horned owls almost completely) - Gone! Two or three years ago, they returned to the area. I heard them before I saw them, and was as cheered by that harsh whistling announcing their return as I had been saddened before by their disappearance.

  5. Hi James. The Blue Jays here were also decimated by the West Nile virus. They didn’t disappear completely, but their numbers were so low I thought I might have to rename the property. It took a couple of years before things returned to the way they had been.